ssti features

Commentary: The New Urban Crisis and inclusive technology-based economic development

Among this year’s most talked about books on economic development is Richard Florida’s The New Urban Crisis. This commentary provides a brief overview of Florida’s book, a response to his conclusions, and insight into what the crisis may mean for economic development practitioners more broadly. 

Alternative to VC: Capital Models to Achieve Economic Prosperity

In last week’s Digest article – Alternatives to VC: Reconsidering the Startup Financing Paradigm – SSTI examined the conventional venture capital (VC) model as well as its advantages and limitations. In this installment, we will highlight alternatives such as revenue-based financing, venture debt, crowdfunding and a new financing model for cleantech proposed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers. We also take a look at the potential that these alternatives have for the field of tech-based economic development.

Blockchain Tech: An Emerging Industry? (Part 2)

Last week, the basics of the blockchain platform as well as the potential that it presents as an emerging industry were presented in the Digest. In this week’s post, the use of blockchain platforms and applications for the fintech industry as well as other industries that could see disruption due the introduction of the blockchain are explored.

Blockchain Tech: An Emerging Industry?

In a special feature this week, SSTI will examine a developing technology advancement that has been increasingly drawing public attention. This is the first of a two-part series examining blockchain and its implications for business and industry, with today’s story focusing on the technology, while next week will focus on its applications and challenges.

Economic Development Ballot Initiatives

While economic development issues have been taking a back seat to other discussions surrounding the presidential election, two state ballot initiatives address these issues directly and several other states feature educational initiatives. Engineering facilities at the University of Rhode Island and biomedical research in Montana would advance if ballot initiatives in those states pass on November 8.

Governors' Races: TBED Overview

Twelve states have gubernatorial races in this year’s elections. After Indiana Gov. Mike Pence was recruited for the vice presidential ballot, Indiana voters have current Lt. Gov. Eric Holcomb on the ballot as the Republican candidate for governor. Some states have incumbent governors seeking re-election, including Montana, North Carolina, Oregon, Utah and Washington. Others have term-limited governors and are thus seeing new faces on the ballot, including Delaware, Missouri and West Virginia The remaining states have open races, including Indiana, New Hampshire, North Dakota and Vermont.

‘Moneyball’ Meets TBED: Sports Look for Advantage Through Innovation

In Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game — a New York Times bestseller by Michael Lewis from 2003 – the author focuses on the successful approach of Major League Baseball’s (MLB) Oakland Athletics and its general manager Billy Beane’s use of an analytical, evidence-based, sabermetric approach to assemble a competitive baseball team. Conventional wisdom of the time focused on traditional scouting and non-advanced statistics.

The Changing Nature of U.S. Basic Research: Trends in Performance

Using the latest data update of the National Science Foundation’s National Patterns of R&D Resources series, this article, the third and final of SSTI’s series on basic research, describes how the performers of R&D and basic research in the U.S. have changed over time.

The Changing Nature of U.S. Basic Research: Trends in Funding Sources

The second in SSTI’s series on basic research, this article focuses on the ways that the funding sources of R&D and basic research have changed over time. Ultimately, the nature of basic research – long horizons, unknown rewards, and high costs – indicates why some sectors, namely the private sector, may seek shorter term options. A better understanding of the changing nature of funding sources for basic research may be useful in understanding the current state of research and development in the U.S.

The Changing Nature of U.S. Basic Research: Trends in Federal Spending

Innovation in the United States, once a hallmark of economic success, finds itself resting on an increasingly weak foundation, according to an article in The New York Times. The author, Eduardo Porter, suggests that two trends – increased international competition and a stagnant R&D-to-GDP ratio – pose key challenges for the U.S. First, government funding for basic research continues to fall and is politically vulnerable. Second, evidence suggests that American corporations are walking away from basic science as well. Each of these challenges, Porter notes, bodes poorly for American progress. Using a variety of data sources, this Digest series provides a long-term analysis to assess how basic research has changed over time within the larger context of research and development in the United States.

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